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ACTION ALERTS

Click on the links below to learn more about bills currently being reviewed in the state legislature. You can "take action" on these most pressing bills by sending a suggested, editable email to legislators, encouraging them to vote to promote the League issue in question.
 
Improve maternal health outcomes by extending postpartum care

Senate Bill 5068 will improve maternal health outcomes by extending coverage during the postpartum period. Postpartum Medicaid coverage currently ends 60 days after pregnancy. Extending health care coverage through the first year of postpartum is one of the best tools for increasing access to care and improving maternal and infant health. Ask your state senator to vote yes on SB 5068. If your senator is on the Senate Ways and Means committee, send an email to him or her before 4 p.m., Monday, Feb. 15 when the hearing is scheduled.

Facing up to the risks and costs of wildfires

House Bill 1168, the Wildfire Response, Forest Restoration and Community Resilience Act, is a comprehensive, realistic action plan to address our escalating wildfires and smoke filled summers. Last year was the most destructive yet, overwhelming Washington State Department of Natural Resources's firefighting personnel and equipment and showed that the timeline for treating at-risk forests must be accelerated. If your representatives are on the House Appropriations Committee, ask them to support HB 1168.

Visit the Current Actions page to learn how to support all actions.


NEXT STOP RULES COMMITTEE

By Pat Griffith, Gun Safety Issue Chair

All bills need to be out of their policy committee by the Feb. 15 cutoff date and fiscal bills out of fiscal committee by Feb. 22. Attention now goes to the rules committee in each house. The powerful rules committee considers all bills passed by policy and fiscal committees and determines whether, and in what order, to schedule them for consideration on the floor by the full Senate or House.
 
The lieutenant governor chairs the Senate Rules Committee. The House Speaker, Laurie Jinkins, chairs the House Rules Committee. Legislators covet assignment to these committees. Learn more about the Senate Rules Committee in this guide on the committee's webpage and more about the House Rules Committee on its webpage.
 
In committee, members may “pull” a bill for consideration. The number of “pulls” by each person is determined by the chair, based on leadership priorities, budget realities and assessment of the bill’s prospects.
 
Bills with fiscal impact must first negotiate the ways and means or appropriations committee before being referred to the rules committee.
 
It is not uncommon for a bill to pass its policy committee(s) but not emerge from rules committee and end up in the X file, possibly to re-emerge in a future session.
 
This is the first year that rules committee hearings are accessible by TVW. Check the committee hearing times and TVW's schedule.


LWVWA ISSUES

The LWVWA supports the following League Legislative Issues in the current Washington state legislative session. Click on an issue to learn more, including current and upcoming bills affecting the issue. In this virtual legislative session, you can also testify for a bill online.

DEMOCRACY

Elections | Critical actions needed to protect election workers and support Ranked-Choice Voting.

Election Security | Ensure secure, accurate and transparent elections.
 
Money in Politics | Let's finally close the lobbying revolving door!
 
Redistricting and Census | Speak Up for districts you can believe in. Learn how Speak Up Schools are making the 2021 Redistricting Commission accountable.
   
FIGHTING CLIMATE CHANGE AND ITS EFFECTS
 
Climate Change | You can take action this week on five climate bills.
 
Energy | Take action on an energy bill, and a link to renewable energy webinar.

Natural Resources | It's time to take action against wildfires!

Transportation | A new transportation budget will be adopted this year and emphasis will be on reducing the net impact of transportation systems on climate change.

ENSURING SOCIAL JUSTICE

Criminal Justice | Address the impact of systemic racism and advocate for a criminal justice system that is equitable, transparent, and evidence-based
 
Social Justice | Expand economic, political and social opportunities and protections for historically marginalized groups.
 
Gun Safety | 5038 and 5078 go to Rules Committee.
 
Housing and Homelessness | Emphasis will be on obtaining increased investment in affordable housing and retention of, at minimum, current levels of rental assistance and other homelessness prevention programs.
 
Health Care, Behavioral Health and Reproductive Rights | Establish 12 months of post-partum care for mothers.

IMPROVE EDUCATION

Public Education | Fully fund K-12 education and increase funding for student support services, including broadband access.

ESTABLISHING FAIR REVENUE

Adequate and Fair Revenue and Budget | We need change in our tax system, making it more fair and more adequate.

HOW TO TESTIFY FOR A BILL ONLINE

In addition to contacting your legislators via Action Alerts, bill comments, emails and phone calls, you can register to testify remotely, submit written testimony or have your position noted for the legislative record. Speak for yourself and explain your personal interest in the bill. Unless you obtain permission, you should not emphasize the League in testimony.
 
Just follow these steps:
  • Visit the "Participating in Committee Hearings" section of the Washington State Legislature's website.
  • Press the "Register to Testify Remotely" button, even if you just want to submit written testimony or have your position noted for the record.
  • Select House or Senate.
  • Use the dropdown menus at the top to select the committee and the hearing date and time.
  • Select the bill you’re interested in, then select the type of testimony — oral, written or noting your position for the record — and follow the directions provided. 
  • Fill out your identifying information, then hit "Submit" at the bottom.


CALENDAR

  • Monday, Feb. 15Spokane Area LWV presents "Day 1 Speak Up School" to prepare people to testify before the Redistricting Commission.
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  • Monday, Feb. 15Last day to pass bills out of committee in the state legislature and read them into the record on the floor in the bills' house of origin, except for the House fiscal committees; Senate Ways and Means Committee; and transportation committees in the house of origin.
  • Thursday, Feb. 18—LWV of Snohomish County presents "Redistricting 101" in the morning and evening
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  • Saturday, Feb. 20Spokane Area LWV presents "Day 2 Speak Up School" to prepare people to testify before the Redistricting Commission.
  • Monday, Feb. 22Last day to pass bills out of committee in the state legislature and read them into the record on the floor for the House fiscal committees; Senate Ways and Means Committee; and
    transportation committees in the house of origin.

OTHER WAYS TO FOLLOW THE STATE LEGISLATURE

  • Washington State Legislature website, leg.wa.gov.
  • Washington state's public affairs TV network, TVW.org.